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weak period in which i think you have conservative politicians on the hill, hoping something more might come out. but, appearing petty, because, as you pointed out, chris, this is unprecedented, that you would block the defense secretary, and, allows the white house to say, this is creating instability. we have 66,000 troops still on the ground in afghanistan and need a defense secretary, secretary panetta is having to go to brussels this week, which was supposed to be the coming out party for senator hagel as defense secretary and they are taking on their own republican senators and i think if you count the votes now, they don't have the votes to block. >> chris: the votes to block but they've got -- >> had the votes to essentially have a filibuster and they say they will not filibuster but they don't have the votes at the end of next week to block hagel. >> chris: all right, but you talk about the information they want and you say they are moving the goal post, if you will.
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bob, as somebody who knows a little bit about cover-ups, are you a little surprised about the fact that we still don't know what the president was doing on the night of september 11th and we still don't know who he called, what he did, only talked about pentagon, defense secretary, once, that he never called anybody in libya, and, are you also surprised -- i'm not saying -- i'm astonished, the administration refused to give congress the fbi interviews with the survivors of benghazi. >> those are good questions and are always unanswered in questions like this but the hagel confirmation is not the forum to get that kind of information. there is another dimension here and that is, what are democratic senators really thinking about the hagel nomination? i understand some of them actually called the white house and said, is hagel going to withdraw? would he consider withdrawing, the answer is an emphatic "no"
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and, remember, john erlichmen, nixon's aide used to talk about twisting slowly in the wind and the factor here is time and there is this twisting in the wind aura to all of this, and i wonder whether the democrats are kind of looking and asking what really is the fundamental question here, is he the best person to be secretary of defense? >> chris: all right. we have to take a break, when we come back the fight over spending comes down to the wire, with the sequester deadline less than two weeks away. ♪ well, technically i work for one. that company, the united states postal service® works for thousands of home businesses. because at® you can pay, print and have your packages picked up for free. i can even drop off free boxes. i wear a lot of hats. well, technically i wear one. the u.s. postal service®, no business too small.
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>> chris: still to come our power player of the week. >> is the state of the union... >> chris: sometimes hollywood calls. they also help out reporters. >> people calling with questions, to try to put something into historical context. >> chris: stay tuned, we'll be right back.
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>> everyone should be clear that sequestration is a republican policy and it is a bad policy. >> the sequester was the president's idea. his party needs to follow through on their plans to
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replace it. >> chris: house speaker john boehner and democratic whip steny hoyer, still no closer to a deal to avoid $85 billion in spending cuts on march 1st and we're back now with the panel. the man who literally wrote the book about the budget battle, put it to rest: whose idea was the sequester and did you ever think we'd actually get to this point? >> first, it was the white house, it was obama and jack lew and rob nabors who went to harry reid and said this is the solution but everyone has their fingerprint on this and it is everyone's -- the policy and it is law, what is important about it is, it is a governing travesty. the idea that you are going to go around and in random ways cut things and would be like a family that has to cut their budget, saying, let's cut the
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medicine that keeps the children alive. it is stupid. >> chris: kim, having said that it is stupid, what are the chances that we're actually going to reach march 1st and the sequester, the $85 billion in automatic cuts, will kick in and if it does, and if we begin to see, markets reacting and stuff, how does it play out with the president insisting there have to be tax hikes on the rich, and, the republicans saying, no, it all needs to come out of spending cuts? >> i think it is very likely we hit that day and it comes and the reason why is because, the republicans have been asking the white house to come up with some sort of alternative, which you actually prioritize, look forward, maybe, do something on entitlements and they will not do that. >> wait, senate democrats came up with a plan -- >> tax hikes. >> chris: partly cuts, but, yes, also tax hikes, half and half. >> and republicans said, look we did tax hikes, a month ago and you can tax everybody 100% of their income at the higher end and it will not deal with this
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and we need a focus on the spending problem and the main question is how the white house decides to implement this and whether they'll play really big games because the temptation for the white house is there is latitude en how you can actually put the cuts into effect and you can do them in a way that doesn't hurt as much but their temptation is going to be to just make it as painful as possible, what school districts -- always cut the fine arts programs to make the parents want to cough up the money in the -- >> the white house already put out it will be kids, thousands of kids thrown out of head start, no food safety inspectors to make sure our food is safe. you know, all kinds of dire things, small business won't get any kind of loan guarantees. they are saying we'll make it hurt. >> and i think the news media will play into that at every level but the big ticket here is you are cutting jobs, millions of jobs around a country and you are damaging the economy. so, stupid as bob said is a good word for it. it is taking a hatchet to the
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economy, the moment when the economic recovery, no matter if you are republican or democrat, by everybody's estimates is in a fragile state and doesn't make sense and now, the president says, you know, look back to the negotiations he was having with speaker boehner and he said a lot of those proposals are still on the table, we can get back -- we have a three month delay an kick the can down the road a little farther and avoid -- >> two month delay. >> that is the way we apparently govern now in washington, from one crisis to another and the question is when you bump up against it and come up against the debt ceiling and the fiscal cliff usually we put it off but this is one i think that will cause tremendous damage and the -- >> $85 billion. >> with the congress gone for a week when do they have time to negotiate. >> $85 billion in a $3.5 trillion budget. >> and -- >> it will hurt the economy. >> if you lose your job i think it hurts you, don't you think. >> fundamentally, the debt we have at the moment is the bigger problem for the economy and job
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creation. the president -- >> chris: let me bring karl in here. one, to talk about the sequester and also, in a bigger sense, look at the president's state of the union speech and agenda he laid out and what does it tell us what he wants to do in his second term. >> spend a lot of money and pursue a lot of liberal social policies and also says he's out of touch with the reality of where the country is, the democrats spent the last week going around and saying we don't have a spending problem and on the fox poll 83% of the american people say we have a spending problem, i agree with kim, $85 billion cut is a 2.4% cut, roughly out of this year's budget, a chunk, but, a lot of families have had to cut deeper and it is an $85 billion cut in government spending when we have a $16 trillion economy. the administration is right to say there will be some problems with the across-the-board hair cuts, why the republicans and the house have been talking about -- continuing resolution to fund the government that will follow in a matter of a couple of days including flexibility
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for the president and the administration to move money around between accounts and you have a ship building account at dod, spend out for the next five years and allow them to take money and put it into maintenance and operation for the -- keep the fitness of our current services, but let's be honest, this was a bad idea, hoisted upon us by the president of the united states, who had 18 months to lead the country in a way to make smart, not stupid, cuts and we cut $600 billion and added $600 billion in tax revenues in january and the president ran last year's tv ad for saying every dollar in revenues we ought to have $2.50 in spending cuts and now where we're'? talking about... $85 billion... >> the president's sequester -- >> all right, no, no. [all talking at once]. >> and they really don't want to talk about the origins of the sequester now. but, the republicans definitely have a role in the, but, i think
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we are missing -- this is where you have to look at the threes and the mandated cuts, the national institutes of health. 5% cuts. this is one of the crown jewels of american science. what nih has done, and a 5% cut will be devastating to them. >> chris: but couldn't you do $85 billion in cuts, that wouldn't be devastating? >> no. >> chris: with a trillion dollar government? [all talking at once]. >> it is mandated in law and the white house has said -- >> that's the point of the house republicans, they are saying, make smart cuts, not stupid cuts. >> go back to the comment before, republicans in the house, most republicans in the house including the speaker voted for this. >> but, look, here's the deal. republicans now are for the sequester because they have no trust, no confidence in the president's willingness to cut spending at all and he had 18
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months to lead us and he hasn't. the fact of the matter is, is that we had tools to avoid the kind of thing we're talking about if congress will sit down and the republicans are willing to grant the democrat president the flexibility to make these cuts in a manner he determines and he -- [all talking at once]. >> there is movement behind this scenes on this. i think some of the democrats have gone to the white house and said, now, wait a minute, can we delay the sequester or one year? and, that makes sense. granted, it is another kicking of the can -- >> republicans will not go for that. >> they might. and i think, wait a minute. you've got a situation where this is so idiotic and juan is right. this is about jobs, about the state of the economy. >> no, it's not... it is about spending and, the... >> chris: i'm glad we cleared that up. thank you, panel. but don't forget to check out panel-plus, where our panel will pick up with this discussion
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discussion on our web site, and we'll post the video before noon eastern time an follow us on twitter @foxnewssunday. up next our power player of the week. ♪
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>> chris: there have been 1, 942 senators since congress started in 1789. one of the fun facts we learn from our power player of the week. ♪
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>> i have a front row seat for the best show in washington. and it is. >> chris: donald richie is the senate historian. keeping track of everything it does, and why. >> the yeas are 59... the nays are 39... >> the senate does a lot of business by precedent and, you know. we have very few rules in the senate but we have thousands of press dents. >> chris: when the impeachment trial of bill clinton happened, they wanted to know what happened to the trial of andrew johnson in 1868. >> one question was, has anybody other than a member of the house ever presented a case against -- on the floor of the senate. >> chris: richie's answer was no. >> he should be removed from office as president of the united states. >> chris: congressmen had to make the case against clinton, not their lawyers. recently, senators have been asking lots of questions about the filibuster. and ways to stop it. >> they all recognize the senate would be a different institution and, quite frankly, they'll say,
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the senate would be just like the house of representatives. which is something the senate doesn't want -- >> not a compliment. >> not in the slightest. we have files on filibusters and we have files on every, single person whoever served in the senate. >> chris: he took us into the archives of the office. picking a fill at random. >> i pulled out, butler, the first senator from alaska. >> chris: and also have 35,000 photos, drawings and cartoons, of the senate over the centuries. >> this is a picture of the senators in the 1880s. standing on the steps... >> chris: all men. >> yes, all men. >> chris: and this wonderful photo op of a senate softball game in the 1950s with a young jack kennedy as the catcher. sometimes hollywood calls. when they were making a movie about howard hughes, testifying before a senate committee, they wanted to match the color of the drapes. they also help out reporters. >> the day of the state of the union we uncover so much, people
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calling with questions, to try to put something into historical context. >> chris: the historian's office opened in 1975 just after watergate. >> the legislature was asking the president to make his papers public and then historians said, what are you doing about your papers? >> chris: he joined the staff a year later and became senate historian, in 2009. >> in an institution where henry clay and daniel webster, their desks are still there, i'm looking at the past and i'm also watching the president as it unfolds. >> chris: 45 senators are now serving their first terms. in a period of dramatic turnover, richie is gratified to be part of the body's institutional memory. >> my main objective is to make sure that the people who are in power have accurate information to base their decisions on. and, any time that i have been able to provide something, that i think helps them is something i get great satisfaction out of. >> chris: i asked him what are
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the big changes in the senate over the past half century and he said jet travel, making it easier to commute from their states and tell advising of the senate starting in 1986 and lots more security. and that's it for today. have a great week, and we'll see you next "fox news sunday." have a great week, and we'll see you next "fox news sunday." ♪ captioning by, closed captioning services, inc.
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FOX News Sunday With Chris Wallace
FOX February 17, 2013 9:39am-10:00am EST

News/Business. An analysis of top newsmakers and events. (HD) (CC) (Stereo)

program was likely cut short due to a recording issue

TOPIC FREQUENCY Hagel 4, Us 4, Kim 2, United States 2, Washington 2, Richie 2, Hollywood 2, Benghazi 1, Libya 1, Alaska 1, Brussels 1, U.s. 1, Hagel Nomination 1, The United States Postal 1, Pentagon 1, Fbi 1, Rob Nabors 1, Karl 1, Afghanistan 1, John Boehner 1
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Duration 00:20:34
Scanned in Annapolis, MD, USA
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Pixel width 528
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on 2/17/2013